What exactly do rangers do? What other roles are there within the Parks and Wildlife Service? Here are some options as well as how you can work towards getting employment in this area.
Parks and Reserves Managers and Senior Rangers are involved with: staff and budget management; project management; liaising with government agencies (Tasmania Fire Service, Police, Forestry) and local businesses; policy development; conservation planning for flora, fauna and cultural heritage (Aboriginal and European) and much more.
They have University degrees in Applied Science/Science or Environmental Management. They have studied topics like flora, fauna, planning, engaging the local community, indigenous issues, heritage building preservation, weeds and endangered species. Check the subjects you need for university entrance.
Some of the possible institutions are Charles Sturt Uni - NSW, www.csu.edu.au – (distance courses are available). Related courses are available at University of Tasmania www.utas.edu.au, New England University www.une.edu.au and more.
Rangers are involved in daily land management issues. Some of this work is in the field and hands on. Rangers use computers, manage budgets, fight fires, work with local communities, assist visitors, rescue animals and people, drive tractors, clean facilities, carry out enforcement. spray weeds, control feral animals and much more.
They may have a University or TasTAFE (www.tastafe.tas.edu.au) qualification and skills in Conservation and Land Management - including mechanics, chainsaw safety, occupational health and safety, environmental management, knowledge of plants, animals, feral cats/foxes, weeds - poisoning techniques.
Wildlife Specialist Jobs
These jobs include zoologists, marine biologists, threatened species/feral pest scientists, botanists, earth scientists and game management. They work with wildlife surveys, devils, eagles, threatened species flora etc. Rangers regularly work with these specialists who are in a different department but closely linked – the Department of Primary Industries and Water)
Many students will think of this work when they think of ‘Rangers’. Qualifications are usually University degrees in zoology/botany/environmental management often with Honours/Masters.
Other park jobs
TAFE qualifications will help you to be competitive in applying for:
Field Officers – assist Rangers, do practical jobs – building, fire fighting, road maintenance, track maintenance, cleaning toilets, rubbish, picnic shelters and walker huts. TATAFE Conservation and Land Management
Administration – organize, balance money/accounts, records
Visitor Reception Officers - knowledge of parks around the State, customer service, publication sales
Cave Guide /Discovery(Education) Ranger
Fire Crew /Track Workers
Regional or City Jobs
Managers – set priorities, coordinate work Planners – park management plans
Interpretation/education – communication/signs, brochures, website, talks
Asset Management – building standards
Public Relations – media contact/communication
Fire Management – planning/control Heritage management – historic/marine sites
Track Management – safety/monitor tracks Marine Reserve – planning/management
Park entry – administer passes
Commercial Services – business/tour operators
Finance – tracking park expenses
Human resources – staff management and recruitment.
How do you find out?
Vacancies will be advertised in the newspaper/website www.jobs.tas.gov.au. Positions are very competitive, and you may need to persevere. Visit national parks, look around, watch and see what is happening. Join Wildcare www.wildcaretas.org.au and volunteer in a park or volunteer with Tasmania Fire Service www.fire.tas.gov.au. If you are very keen, ring and ask for an appointment to meet one of the staff.